Jun 14, 2021  
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Academic Information

Colleges  > College of Liberal Arts & Social Sciences  > Academic Information


CLASS Policies and Procedures


The goal of the advisors in the CLASS Academic Affairs Center and the departments within the college is to ensure that each student has access to competent academic advising at all stages of the student’s college career. All incoming freshmen and transfer students are required to go through orientation, where pertinent policies and procedures are introduced and potential problems are discussed.

The college provides an overall view of the college, then undergraduate advisors in each department help students with the initial task of schedule planning and enrollment (registration). Thereafter, advisors are available on an ongoing basis should any questions or problems concerning academic progress occur.

Specific times when academic advising is suggested:

  • upon entering as a freshman or transfer (required).
  • for enrollment (registration) and add/drop questions.
  • to declare or change a major.
  • to declare or change a minor.
  • to clarify any academic policy or procedure.
  • anytime UH semester GPA falls below 2.0 to discuss UH resources for success
  • anytime UH cumulative GPA falls below 2.0 (required) to discuss UH resources for success, enrollment limitations and requirements in order to avoid suspension
  • at or before 60 hours to file a degree plan (filing a timely degree plan can and does minimize lost hours and delayed graduation).
  • at or before 90 hours and each term thereafter until graduation to verify that all requirements will be met as expected (required).

Declaration of Major

Many entering students have a well-defined career objective and major course of study. These students should declare their majors upon entering the college and should seek academic counsel from their major departments. Students who are admitted to a major in the college must enroll in at least one course each term in approved coursework for their declared major requirements.

Freshman students who are uncertain of their majors are encouraged to enroll first through Exploratory Studies and seek academic advising from the advisors for the major(s) they are considering. Before enrolling as sophomores (30 hours), students must petition for a change in major to one of the degree programs in the college.

For further information on degree requirements please read: CLASS General Degree Information .

Declaration of Minor

Students who wish to declare a minor to any of the college’s degree programs must have established at least a 2.00 minimum cumulative UH grade point average and meet the requirements of the individual department. Some minor programs may have additional requirements.

For further information on minor requirements please read: CLASS Minors Requirements  

Change of Major

Students who wish to change their majors to any of the college’s degree programs must have established at least a 2.00 minimum cumulative UH grade point average and meet the requirements of the individual department. Some departments, including Communication Sciences and Disorders, School of Communication, Economics, and Health and Human Performance, have additional requirements.

Students who wish to change their major to any of the college’s degree programs must also enroll in at least one course each term in approved coursework for their declared major requirements.

Students with less than a 2.00 grade point average are encouraged to obtain academic advising from the department to which they wish to change; however, they are not eligible to officially change their major until the required grade point average is attained.

Double Majors

The baccalaureate degree must be the same for both majors (e.g.: B.A., B.S., B.B.A., B.F.A.).

Students pursing a double major must identify one of the two majors as primary one for purposes of establishing an academic home of record.

Students who complete a double major earn only one degree and are only eligible to participate in the graduation ceremonies based on their primary major.

For more information, visit the undergraduate academic catalog for Degree Requirements for Double Major.

Double Degrees

Students who want official university recognition for more than a double major must earn more than one bachelors degree. Students who seek to pursue two separate undergraduate degrees, simultaneously, regardless if one of both degrees are from the same college, must officially declare and complete all requirements for both degree programs. Students pursuing a double degree will have two separate degrees awarded.

Students who are pursing two majors that have different degree objectives (e.g.: B.A., B.S., B.F.A., B.M, B.B.A.) must pursue a double degree. Students can also earn a double degree for bachelor degrees with the same degree objective as long as they satisfy all necessary requirements.

In order to complete a double degree, a student must earn a minimum of 30 semester hours in addition to the minimum total hours required for the degree being pursued with the highest minimum total hour requirement. A minimum of 150 credit hours is needed for two degrees unless one of the degrees has a higher minimum total hour requirement. (See UH Catalog information for additional Bachelors Degree.)

Students must satisfy the university, college, and both major requirements under the catalog in which they qualify for. (See information in the UH Catalog Degree Requirements for “Graduation Under a Particular Catalog”.)

Students may not earn a degree both major and a minor in the same field of study. All majors and minors declared for pursing a double degree must be from different fields of study. Students can add a second major and/or minor to one or both bachelor degrees as long as the second major or minor are from different fields of study. (See information in the UH Catalog Degree Requirements for “Double Major”.)

The University does not recognize a triple major or any number of majors above two for a single bachelors degree. (See information in the UH Catalog Degree Requirements for “Double Major”.)

For graduation purposes, students must apply for each bachelors degree separately and pay for each graduation fee during the term they intend to graduate. Students who complete a Double Degree will be eligible to participate in the graduation ceremonies for both degrees.

Students who are interested in pursing a double degree should meet with each of their intended major advisors for degree planning.

For further information on degree requirements please read: CLASS General Degree Information .

Repeated Courses

Students may not count repeated course hours toward their graduation total or towards their 36 required advanced hours unless courses are listed in the catalog as repeatable, are designated as special/ selected topics or are required for their major.


CLASS strictly adheres to the university calendar, e.g., deadlines for admission and enrollment (registration), and drop dates, and application for graduation, etc. Exceptions are considered only for documented, extenuating, nonacademic circumstances.

Grade Changes

Questions regarding grades in CLASS courses must be resolved within 90 calendar days following the posting of the grade. Grade changes are approved only for correction of errors in computing the grade, and a grade change form must be submitted no later than the close of the semester/summer session following the posting of the grade.

Grades of I (incomplete) must be resolved within one year of the posting of the grade. Incomplete grades must be resolved with the instructor awarding the grade. Incomplete grades cannot be resolved by re-enrolling for the course in question.

Fulfillment of Grade Requirements for a Degree

To determine the fulfillment of degree requirements, the required grade point average for graduation is calculated as described in the Academic Regulations and Degree Requirements section of this catalog with the following differences:

  1. No incomplete grades (grades of  I) can be remaining at the time of graduation.
  2. All courses taken in major and minor fields in CLASS, including repeated and failed courses, will be considered when determining major and minor GPAs.

Filing for Graduation

Degrees are not awarded automatically upon completion of the scholastic requirements. To be a candidate for a degree, students must submit an application for graduation by the stated deadline in the university schedule, for the intended term of graduation. Candidates for graduation who were previously disapproved must reapply.

Successful graduation candidates can anticipate the posting of the degree within 60 days after the official closing date of the term, and the receipt of their diplomas approximately two weeks after the degree is posted.

Undergraduate Course Load

Course loads for undergraduate students are determined by university policy, curriculum of study, and personal factors such as work and family responsibilities. See the Academic Regulations and Degree Requirements section of this catalog for a complete discussion of course loads. In general, for those students who expect to complete the requirements for a bachelor’s degree in about four years, the maximum undergraduate course loads for the fall and spring terms are as follows:

Classification Hours
Freshmen 16
Sophomores, juniors, seniors, post-baccalaureates 19
Students with a Cumulative GPA below 2.0 12

Maximum Summer Session Course Load
Session Hours
Summer Session 2 7
Summer Session 4 7
Summer Session 2 and Summer Session 4 14

An undergraduate or post baccalaureate student who is on Academic Probation or Academic Warning shall enroll in no more than 5 hours in Summer Session 2 or Summer Session 4, or 10 hours in Summer Session 1 or Summer Session 3.

The totals listed above include all courses for which students may wish to enroll. Permission to take course loads above these maximums must be approved by the faculty advisor (or the chair of the major department) and dean. (See Regulations and Requirements section for details on maximum course loads and overloads for Fall, Spring, and Summer sessions. Students on probation or academic warning must check regulations and requirements for specific class load limitations.)

Academic Grievance Policy

In the normal conduct of education at the University of Houston, justifiable grievances may arise concerning the violation of university, college, or department academic policies or procedures. CLASS is committed to resolving these grievances in a fair, orderly, and expeditious manner. To that end, the college has established informal and formal procedures beginning at the department level for settling academic grievances.

An academic grievance refers to an action taken against a student by a member of the faculty (including part-time instructors and teaching assistants), staff, or administration that either violates a university, college, or department academic policy or procedure or prejudicially treats the student on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, handicap, veteran status, or any other nonacademic status.

Because assigning a grade or evaluating a student’s work performance involves the faculty’s professional judgment and is an integral part of the faculty’s teaching responsibilities, disagreement with an instructor concerning a grade or evaluation is not a justifiable grievance to be factors such as those mentioned in the previous paragraph can be shown to have affected that grade or evaluation.

A student with a justifiable grievance that can be substantiated should initiate academic grievance proceedings within 90 calendar days of the action in dispute.

Any student who believes he or she has an academic grievance involving CLASS should first try to resolve the grievance informally with the faculty member or other involved parties within 90 calendar days of the action in dispute. In some cases, the student may have to discuss the grievance with the department chair, the college officer designated by the dean, or both before obtaining a satisfactory resolution.

If the informal discussions do not resolve the academic grievance, the aggrieved student may initiate a formal grievance by submitting a written complaint to the chair of the department involved (or the college officer designated by the dean if the chair is the focus of the grievance) as soon as the informal proceedings have ended.

The aggrieved student who does not obtain a satisfactory resolution at the departmental level may file a formal appeal first with the office of the dean and then, failing to obtain satisfaction, with the office of the senior vice president for academic affairs.

The procedures a graduate student must follow to file an academic grievance in the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences are in the Faculty Handbook. The procedures an undergraduate student must follow are available in writing in the office of each department in the college and in the Office of the Dean (402-AH).

Academic Warning

First time in college (FTIC) freshman students who earn less than a 2.00 grade point average in the first long term (i.e., Fall or Spring) of enrollment at the University of Houston shall be placed on academic warning. Students on academic warning must be advised by their major department advisor and may also be required to be advised by the Academic Advising Center of Undergraduate Scholars at UH. CLASS students on academic warning may not enroll for more than 12 credit hours of enrollment in fall and spring term and no more than five hours in Summer Session 2 or Summer Session 4, or 10 hours in Summer Session 1 or Summer Session 3.

Academic Probation

Students are placed on academic probation if their cumulative grade point average falls below 2.00. Freshman and sophomore students on academic probation are required to seek advising in their major departments in order to obtain academic support to improve academic performance and avoid academic suspension. CLASS students on probation may not enroll for more than 12 credit hours of enrollment in fall and spring semesters and no more than five hours in Summer Session 2 or Summer Session 4, or 10 hours in Summer Session 1 or Summer Session 3.

Students on academic probation whose cumulative grade point average is below 2.00 but whose semester grade point average is higher will remain on continued academic probation. Students on academic probation will be removed from that status when their cumulative grade point average is at or above 2.00.

Students on academic probation whose cumulative grade point average is below 2.00 and whose semester GPA is below 2.00 will be placed on academic suspension and will be restricted from future enrollment until the terms of their suspension have been met.

Suspension & Readmission

Any student suspended from the college for academic or disciplinary reasons is ineligible to return during the designated period of suspension. Effective Fall 2011 all suspended students must reapply to the university through UH Admissions. Students from other Colleges seeking readmission to CLASS should refer to the CLASS Policies and Procedures for Readmission and Contracts:

Students must check with the CLASS Academic Affairs Center for the time period during which they may begin the readmission process. While on suspension at UH, a CLASS student may not enroll in classes as follows:

  • First suspension: student must sit out the next full term, either the fall or the spring. (Summer does not count as a full term.)
  • Second suspension: student must sit out 1 full year (12 months).
  • Third suspension: student will not be readmitted to UH.

CLASS does not grant readmission during summer terms. Students should be advised that readmission is neither automatic nor guaranteed.

A student readmitted from academic suspension enters the term on probation and must fulfill the following requirements to avoid further academic action.

  1. Enroll in no more than 12 semester hours of approved courses during the semester of reentry and each term thereafter while on continued academic probation.
  2. Earn a minimum 2.00 grade point average during the semester of reentry and each term thereafter while on continued academic probation.
  3. Monitor progress of course work closely and properly drop any course if necessary.
  4. Additional requirements may apply.

Failure to attend the university during the term of readmission cancels the readmission approval. Students may reapply for any subsequent fall or spring term by posted deadlines.

Independent Study Courses and Internships

Each CLASS area provides opportunities for majors and minors to take independent study courses and/or internships. Participation in independent study courses and/or internships requires an approved petition to be on file in the appropriate department. CLASS students may use no more than 6 credit hours of Independent Study and/or Internship courses to satisfy any major requirements in CLASS, and no more than 6 credit hours to satisfy any minor requirements in CLASS.

Manual verification is needed to ensure that no more than 6 credit hours of Independent Study/Internships are used towards either all CLASS major requirements or all CLASS minor requirements.

Note: If a student takes nine or more hours of internship/independent study courses, no more than nine hours will be given a letter grade.

Transfer Credit

Questions concerning transfer credit are resolved by the petition process. This process originates in the department of the major, and the petitions are routed to the relevant department and dean’s offices.

Dean’s List

The Dean’s List, a tabulation of the names of all undergraduate honor students, is compiled each term. To qualify for this recognition in CLASS, students must earn a 3.50 minimum grade point average (the grade of S is not counted) on twelve or more semester hours completed during the term. At least nine of the twelve semester hours must be letter grades. Students who earn a grade of I (except in a senior honors thesis course), D, F, or U during the term are excluded from consideration for the Dean’s List. Students who have filed a Request to Withhold Public Information form with the university will not be listed.

For additional information regarding general degree requirements, please see the General Degree Information  section.

Special Programs and Organizations

Center for Immigration Research

The Center for Immigration Research was established in 1995 to conduct research on immigration processes and issues that have policy implications at the local, national and international levels. A major goal of the center is to train students in immigration research. Students work as assistants in research projects and use center research data for writing senior honors theses. The center conducts research from a wide range of perspectives, e.g., health, religion and federal policies in local, national and international areas. Findings from center projects are shared with policy makers and the public through conferences, professional publications and public media. The center actively seeks working collaborations with other academic institutions and community organizations in the United States and abroad.

Hobby School of Public Affairs

The foundation of the Hobby School of Public Affairs is built upon interdisciplinary expertise and community visibility. The Hobby School offers a Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree as well as a joint MPP/MSW (Master of Social Work). The Hobby School’s research component is found within the Center for Public Policy, including programs and initiatives such as the Survey Research Institute, the Concept Visualization Lab, the EITM Summer Institute, and the Civitas Project. Public service and community engagement are also a vital component of the Hobby School as evidenced through Hobby Fellows, Leland Fellows, the Civic Houston Internship Program, the nationally-accredited Certified Public Manager program, the Civic Engagement Boot Camp, and various public events such as conferences, luncheons and volunteer projects.

Inter-University Consortium for International Studies

The University of Houston, the University of St. Thomas, and Texas Southern University have established the Inter-University Consortium for International Studies to broaden the opportunities for undergraduates to take courses in the field of international studies.

Students may take certain approved courses at any of the three universities without added tuition. This opportunity is subject to the following conditions:

  1. Students must be in good standing.
  2. Students can take no more than nine semester hours of courses outside their own universities.
  3. All course prerequisites must be met unless waived by the instructor.

For more information write:

University of Houston
Inter-University Consortium for International Studies
Attn: Director
Department of Political Science
447 Philip G. Hoffman Hall
Houston, TX 77204-3011

Pre-Law Training

The college provides counseling in pre-professional training to all undergraduates who wish to prepare for the study of law. Such counseling includes providing students with a list of recommended courses that undergraduates may take regardless of their social science major. These recommended courses significantly benefit pre-law students in several ways: they better prepare students for the formal study of law, they increase the capacity to perform well on the Law School Aptitude Test (LSAT), and many are useful to the future practice of law.

In addition to recommending courses to undergraduate pre-law students, the college offers counseling on such subjects as how to prepare for the LSAT, the process of selecting the law school best suited to the student’s personal desires and credentials, and the procedures for applying to law school. Up-to-date information is also provided on the various career opportunities and general employment prospects within the legal field.

Address all inquiries about pre-law counseling and training to:

Department of Political Science
Attn: Pre-Law Advisor
University of Houston
447 Philip G. Hoffman Hall
Houston, TX 77204-3011

Please see the departmental sections for recommended courses.

Programs Abroad

The Learning Abroad office, located in 105 Ezekiel Cullen, is the umbrella for all study abroad programs at the University of Houston.

Four types of programs are offered:

  1. Faculty-led programs, such as those offered through the Department of Modern and Classical Languages to China and France, and through the African American Studies Program to Africa.
  2. Special Programs under the direction of the Department of Hispanic Studies to Latin America and Spain.
  3. Affiliated programs through organizations such as the Council on International Education and Exchange (CIEE), and the University Study Abroad Consortium (USAC), which have established programs all over the world.
  4. Reciprocal Exchange Studies. Students should contact Learning Abroad and the department or organization offering the program as much as a year in advance in order to plan their program.

With most programs, students are able to enroll and receive UH credit for their study abroad courses. Learning Abroad also has resources for numerous scholarships for study abroad that are available to UH students.

Students must apply to Faculty-led programs through the departments.

  • For information and applications for Modern and Classical Languages Department programs, contact the department at 713-743-8350.
  • For information and applications for Special Programs to Latin America and Spain, contact the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Hispanic Studies Department at 713-743-3007 and Learning Abroad. Spanish majors must take a minimum of 15 credit hours, and Spanish minors must take in residence on campus a minimum of nine credit hours, in residence with the Department of Hispanic Studies not including credit by exam or study abroad.
  • For information and applications for African American Studies Programs, contact the director at 713-743-2813.

For information about study abroad programs sponsored both by the University of Houston and other universities, and for scholarship information on study abroad, contact Learning Abroad, 105 Ezekiel Cullen, 713-743-9167.

Social Sciences Laboratory

The Social Sciences Laboratory is sponsored jointly by the departments of Political Science and Sociology to facilitate computer applications in research and teaching among the faculty and students of those departments. The laboratory serves as an archive for data received from the Inter-University Consortium for Political and Social Research and other sources and offers a series of training workshops and class presentations on computer usage, data analysis, and word processing. Laboratory facilities include 21 microcomputer terminals providing use of current software applications and access to the university’s mainframe system.


CLASS departments and schools hold the following accreditation: